Modern Art

Changes in Art

For this week, answer all three of the following questions. Cite at least one example in your response for each question. You should reference your book to help you answer these questions. If you use additional sources, you must cite them. Your answers should be in essay format, be a minimum of three-five sentences each, and include at least three terms from our glossary for each question.

  1. How did the subject matter of Symbolist art diverge radically from Realism?
  2. What types of behavior and interests does fin-de-si├Ęcle describe?
  3. What did Art Nouveau try to synthesize?

Glossary Terms

The following are glossary terms with which you need to become familiar and to utilize within your work this week. You do not need to utilize them all; however, you need to utilize at least three of these terms per assignment response. Please note that some terms are carried over from previous weeks as they apply. Still, you should review all terms each week.

  • Art Nouveau
    • French, “new art.” A late-19th- and early-20th-century art movement whose proponents tried to synthesize all the arts in an effort to create art based on natural forms that could be mass produced by technologies of the industrial age. The movement had other names in other countries: Jugendstil in Austria and Germany, Modernism in Spain, and Floreale in Italy.
  • Color
    • The value or tonality of a color is the degree of its lightness or darkness. The intensity or saturation of a color is its purity, its brightness or dullness. See also primary, secondary, and complementary colors.
  • Complementary colors
    • Those pairs of colors, such as red and green that together embrace the entire spectrum. The complement of one of the three primary colors is a mixture of the other two.
  • Divisionism
    • A system of painting devised by the 19th-century French painter Georges Seurat. The artist separates color into its component parts and then applies the component colors to the canvas in tiny dots (points). The image becomes comprehensible only from a distance, when the viewer’s eyes optically blend the pigment dots. Sometimes referred to as divisionism.
  • Impressionism
    • A late-19th-century art movement that sought to capture a fleeting moment, thereby conveying the illusiveness and impermanence of images and conditions.
  • Japonisme
    • The French fascination with all things Japanese. Japonisme emerged in the second half of the 19th century.
  • Modernism
    • A movement in Western art that developed in the second half of the 19th century and sought to capture the images and sensibilities of the age. Modernist art goes beyond simply dealing with the present and involves the artist’s critical examination of the premises of art itself.
  • Optical mixture
    • The visual effect of juxtaposed complementary colors.
  • Plein air
    • An approach to painting much popular among the Impressionists, in which an artist sketches outdoors to achieve a quick impression of light, air, and color. The artist then takes the sketches to the studio for reworking into more finished works of art.
  • Pointillism
    • A system of painting devised by the 19th-century French painter Georges Seurat. The artist separates color into its component parts and then applies the component colors to the canvas in tiny dots (points). The image becomes comprehensible only from a distance, when the viewer’s eyes optically blend the pigment dots. Sometimes referred to as divisionism.
  • Post-Impressionism
    • The term used to describe the stylistically heterogeneous work of the group of late-19th-century painters in France, including van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and C├ęzanne, who more systematically examined the properties and expressive qualities of line, pattern, form, and color than the Impressionists did.
  • Primary colors
    • Red, yellow, and blue the colors from which all other colors may be derived.
  • Simultaneous contrasts
    • The phenomenon that juxtaposed colors affect the eye’s reception of each, as when a painter places dark green next to light green, making the former appear even darker and the latter even lighter. See also successive contrasts.
  • Successive contrasts
    • The phenomenon of colored afterimages. When a person looks intently at a color (green, for example) and then shifts to a white area, the fatigued eye momentarily perceives the complementary color (red). See also simultaneous contrasts.
  • Symbolism
    • A late-19th-century movement based on the idea that the artist was not an imitator of nature but a creator who transformed the facts of nature into a symbol of the inner experience of that fact.
  • Value
    • The value or tonality of a color is the degree of its lightness or darkness. The intensity or saturation of a color is its purity, its brightness or dullness. See also primary, secondary, and complementary colors.

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